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IRIN Daily Summary of Main Events in Burundi 15 August 1996
Sources for the information below include UN agencies, NGOs, other international organisations and media reports. IRIN issues these reports for the benefit of the humanitarian community, but accepts no responsibility as to the accuracy of the original sources.
# Pierre Buyoya, Burundi's leader since President Sylvestre Ntibantunganya was ousted last month by a military coup, says that his newly-formed transitional government will hold power for three years in spite of sanctions. In an address broadcast on Wednesday, Buyoya set out a shape of the transitional government and called for a national debate on Burundi's future. He said that the debate would begin by November and that the national assembly would be reconstituted - in a modified form - by September. Buyoya's four point plan also included political and social reconstruction. In imposing sanctions after the coup, the region's leaders, backed by other African states, have called for an end to the ban on political parties, the start of all party negotiations and the restoration of constitutional government.
# OAU Secretary-General Salim Ahmed Salim, who arrived in Nairobi on Wednesday for talks with President Daniel arap Moi, said that he did not recognise Buyoya but would talk to him as "one of the important factors in the Burundi situation". Salim said that his Nairobi talks would include the mechanisms for monitoring the sanctions and the requests from aid agencies for waivers to allow humanitarian cargo into Burundi. A WFP convoy, transporting 210 tonnes of beans, crossed into Burundi on Wednesday night from Tanzania and arrived in Ngozi this afternoon. WFP is now negotiating with the Tanzanian authorities to allow a further 2,800 tonnes of food aid into Burundi from the Lake Tanganyika port of Kigoma. The Foreign Minister of Kenya, Kalonzo Musyoka, has said that his country will allow only exemptions in extreme circumstances and only for medicines and humanitarian aid.
# Although sanctions are now in their third week, ordinary consumers in Burundi are said to have not yet felt wide-scale shortages. Petrol is rationed, but the government says there is enough petrol in the country for two months. It has also threatened action against profiteers.
# The voluntary repatriation of Rwandan refugees from Burundi continues, with up to five hundred returning today (Thursday).
# The wife of President Ntibantunganya, who left Burundi Tuesday by the last commercial flight out of the country, said yesterday that her husband has been prevented from leaving Burundi. He is still in refuge at the US embassy. Burundi's new foreign minister, who hs been visiting Brussels and Paris, denied that Ntibantunganya is being kept in Burundi against his will and told a press conference in Paris that Buyoya and Ntibantunganya had discussed arrangements for Ntibantunganya's departure. Sources in Bujumbura say that the ousted president was told he could leave on Tuesday night with his wife but on condition that he left from his own residence and not directly from the US Ambassador's home.
# The UN Security Council on Wednesday agreed to
release a report on the assassination in 1993 of Burundi's
first Hutu president, Melchior Ndadaye. The report
had been delayed because of fears that it could create
further ethnic unrest in Burundi. The 72-page report,
which accuses both Hutu and Tutsi leaders of organising
"acts of genocide", concludes that the assassination
of Ndadaye was planned in advance as part of the coup
in 1993 and mentions contradictory evidence about the
role of Colonel Jean Bikomagu, then and now the Chief
of Staff of the Burundian Army. However, the commission
which wrote the report says that there is a lack of
sufficient evidence concerning both the assassination
and massacres following the coup and makes no recommendation
how to bring those suspected to justice.
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From: UN DHA IRIN <firstname.lastname@example.org> Date: Thu, 15 Aug 1996 16:59:31 +0300 (GMT+0300) Subject: Burundi: IRIN Daily Summary of Main Events 15 August 1996 96.8.15 Message-Id: <Pine.LNX.3.91.960815161959.4098Aemail@example.com>
Editor: Dr. Ali B. Ali-Dinar, Ph.D
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